The Virginia Department of Transportation’s FY2015-2020 Six-Year Improvement Program (SYIP) was recently revised to reflect Code of Virginia §33.1-23.5:5. Statewide prioritization process for project selection. This legislation relates to the prioritization of projects funded by the Commonwealth Transportation Board. Public hearings were held in September and October statewide to receive citizen and stakeholder input, as well as to inform the public of the new prioritization legislation. The general purpose of the legislation is as follows:
The General Assembly declares it to be in the public interest that a prioritization process for projects funded by the Commonwealth Transportation Board be developed and implemented to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the state’s transportation system, transportation safety, transportation accessibility for people and freight, environmental quality, and economic development of the Commonwealth.
As such, the CTB and the Virginia Transportation Secretariat have been diligently taking their message about the new prioritization legislation to localities across the Commonwealth. Each of the state’s construction districts will have an assigned prioritization of projects to be used in developing the SYIP and must consider, at a minimum: highway, rail, transit, technology operational improvements and transportation demand management strategies. For those VDOT construction districts containing Metropolitan Planning Organizations, such as the Roanoke Valley Transportation Planning Organization (RVTPO) in the Salem District, the MPO and the CTB shall cooperate to develop prioritization factors. As a result of the Revised FY2015-2020 SYIP, the Salem District and MPO had no projects which were adversely affected due to the prioritization process.
The five factors to be analyzed are: congestion mitigation, economic development, accessibility, safety, and environmental quality. For those MPOs with populations exceeding 200,000 persons, or Transportation Management Areas (TMA MPOs), there is a sixth prioritization factor of land use and transportation coordination. The RVTPO was designated a TMA MPO following the 2010 Census and is subject to this sixth prioritization factor.
Currently, the RVTPO Policy Board, various committees and staff are providing input on the weighting of the factors that will be used in scoring eligible projects in the SYIP. Once the process is complete, projects in the SYIP subject to prioritization will be scored based on a weighting of the six factors out of a possible 100 percent. The CTB will begin selecting projects based on this legislation beginning July 1, 2016.
Below is the chart used to provide input on the statewide prioritization process. Please feel free to provide us with your feedback on what you believe to be important prioritization factors in ranking candidate projects for the SYIP. In your response(s), – comment box provided below post – please indicate the factor and assign a percentage to each, ensuring that they equal an even 100 percent.
Thank you for your assistance in this process. The results of the official prioritization for the Salem District will be announced in a future posting.